View Poll Results: do away with the electoral college?

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  • yes

    29 46.77%
  • no

    29 46.77%
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    4 6.45%
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Thread: the electoral college

  1. #21
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    Re: the electoral college

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackdog View Post
    This is pretty much irrelevant to the part of his post you left out.

    As it is, since most small states give all their electoral votes to the candidate who wins their majority of voters, small states do matter.

    We are not a democracy and were not intended to be a democracy. We're a Republic, with built-in measures intended to prevent a tyranny of the majority.
    - Goshin
    I guess it depends on what you consider "majority" and "tyrrany", huh? Right now, a minority of people in a majority of states can impose their will, like they did in 2000. Does that bother you? You think that quote was referring to a majority of states or a majority of people?

    Personally, it doesn't matter to me what people 225 years ago thought about what the country should be like. I am more interested in what it really is today. Holding on to some old notion like a misguided Amish farmer doesn't appeal to me.

    The founders also thought women were property and blacks were less than property, and that only property owners had a right to say what the government should do. The fact that they thought states were more important than people (at a time when the US was much more like a confederation of individual countries, and where traveling from state to state could take months) is of little importance today.

    "What best serves us today? What is the best for our country?" Those are the questions to ask, not "What best meets the standards of people from a time long gone?"

  2. #22
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    Re: the electoral college

    Quote Originally Posted by Groucho View Post
    The chance of a Presidential recount i much much smaller than the chance of an individual state recount where there are less voters.
    That's true although, given the electorate scale, a “close” nationwide outcome might be a matter of tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of votes. Al Gore's “margin of victory” in 2000 was 543,895.¹

    Plus, California doesn't have an “official” certified count including absentees and challenged ballots until weeks later. While Democrats have dominated lately, so it's been easy to call precisely who “won” California on election night, the magnitude of that victory based on the actual tally, comes considerably later and could definitely have a sufficient swing to affect the outcome of a very close national election.

    Combine that with 49 other states, and, while you might have a pretty good idea of who won the election on election night or the following day, you might have weeks to wait to know for certain and think of the mayhem as lawyers were flown to principalities in search of more votes or to discredit other votes.

    And, if, after weeks of waiting for the final count, we found that it was necessary to have a nationwide recount; can you imagine the costs and the chaos? The risks associated to such an outcome, albeit unlikely, are enormous.

    No, I think the Electoral College prevents those events from happening outside of one or two states, and spares the rest of the nation for the most part from suffering those consequences.
    “Real environmentalists live in cities, and they visit what's left of the wilderness as gently and respectfully as possible.” — Donna Moulton, letter to the editor, Tucson Weekly, published on August 23, 2001

  3. #23
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    Re: the electoral college

    Quote Originally Posted by emdash View Post
    Your vote might seem insignificant to you, but without electoral votes, less populous states would always be stuck with a President chosen for them by other people. t.
    If your guy loses, your president is always chosen by other people. A persons vote means more without the electoral college. If your state overwhelmingly supports one candidate your vote is meaningless.
    The electoral college was a horrible idea.
    "This Administration will constantly strive to promote an ownership society in America. We want more people owning their own home. It is in our national interest that more people own their own home. After all, if you own your own home, you have a vital stake in the future of our country."" GWB

  4. #24
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    Re: the electoral college

    Quote Originally Posted by Groucho View Post
    I guess it depends on what you consider "majority" and "tyrrany", huh? Right now, a minority of people in a majority of states can impose their will, like they did in 2000. Does that bother you? You think that quote was referring to a majority of states or a majority of people?

    Personally, it doesn't matter to me what people 225 years ago thought about what the country should be like. I am more interested in what it really is today. Holding on to some old notion like a misguided Amish farmer doesn't appeal to me.

    The founders also thought women were property and blacks were less than property, and that only property owners had a right to say what the government should do. The fact that they thought states were more important than people (at a time when the US was much more like a confederation of individual countries, and where traveling from state to state could take months) is of little importance today.

    "What best serves us today? What is the best for our country?" Those are the questions to ask, not "What best meets the standards of people from a time long gone?"
    The electoral college meets our needs just fine. It keeps the dead voters in Chicago and the homeless guys getting a pack of cigarettes from deciding who our president is.

    Sometimes old is better.
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  5. #25
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    Re: the electoral college

    Quote Originally Posted by Chappy View Post
    That's true although, given the electorate scale, a “close” nationwide outcome might be a matter of tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of votes. Al Gore's “margin of victory” in 2000 was 543,895.¹

    Plus, California doesn't have an “official” certified count including absentees and challenged ballots until weeks later. While Democrats have dominated lately, so it's been easy to call precisely who “won” California on election night, the magnitude of that victory based on the actual tally, comes considerably later and could definitely have a sufficient swing to affect the outcome of a very close national election.

    Combine that with 49 other states, and, while you might have a pretty good idea of who won the election on election night or the following day, you might have weeks to wait to know for certain and think of the mayhem as lawyers were flown to principalities in search of more votes or to discredit other votes.

    And, if, after weeks of waiting for the final count, we found that it was necessary to have a nationwide recount; can you imagine the costs and the chaos? The risks associated to such an outcome, albeit unlikely, are enormous.

    No, I think the Electoral College prevents those events from happening outside of one or two states, and spares the rest of the nation for the most part from suffering those consequences.
    Eh, to me, it's more important to know who won than it is to have a quick answer. Accuracy is more important than immediacy. Most elections have not been that close, also.

    The President should represent the people, not the states.

  6. #26
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    Re: the electoral college

    Quote Originally Posted by Groucho View Post
    … The President should represent the people, not the states.
    I'll grant you that is precisely how the people see it; and when public perception separates from process, bad things happen.

    This could be an argument for changing to direct election of the president or better funding for civics education.

    I will fall back to the context of the historical U.S., where the preisdent is in fact a creature of the union of the states and not of the people across all the states. And, within that context the Electoral College serves a purpose which provides some important benefits that should not be overlooked.
    “Real environmentalists live in cities, and they visit what's left of the wilderness as gently and respectfully as possible.” — Donna Moulton, letter to the editor, Tucson Weekly, published on August 23, 2001

  7. #27
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    Re: the electoral college

    A nationwide recount would never happen, we'd still vote state by state. Each state would manage its own election as it does now. If something went wrong in one state we wouldn't have to do the entire thing over.

  8. #28
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    Re: the electoral college

    And, yet, there are statewide elections that have been so close that a statewide recount was ordered. It happens more than you might think. Why not at the national level? I rather think it's more than a little likely.

    For advocates of a direct election, they must contend with the reality that finding one more vote in Alabama is the equivalent of denying one vote in Chicago. Where do you think the lawyers would prefer to operate? i.e., not Alabama.
    “Real environmentalists live in cities, and they visit what's left of the wilderness as gently and respectfully as possible.” — Donna Moulton, letter to the editor, Tucson Weekly, published on August 23, 2001

  9. #29
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    Re: the electoral college

    Quote Originally Posted by USA-1 View Post
    If your guy loses, your president is always chosen by other people.
    Your state, on the other hand, by virtue of having joined the Union, has a right to help choose the President. Perhaps you don't care for states' rights.

    You can imagine that smaller states, upon realizing that they would never have any influence over a presidential election, might have been more reluctant to play along. Hence the electoral college.

    Quote Originally Posted by USA-1 View Post
    The electoral college was a horrible idea.
    I think it is just misunderstood.

  10. #30
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    Re: the electoral college

    Quote Originally Posted by emdash View Post
    Your state, on the other hand, by virtue of having joined the Union, has a right to help choose the President. Perhaps you don't care for states' rights.

    You can imagine that smaller states, upon realizing that they would never have any influence over a presidential election, might have been more reluctant to play along. Hence the electoral college.



    I think it is just misunderstood.
    I believe in personal rights over states rights. Most votes are thrown away with the electoral college. If the majority of Americans want someone to be president, that person should be president. Just my opinion. My vote means nothing the way it's set up.
    "This Administration will constantly strive to promote an ownership society in America. We want more people owning their own home. It is in our national interest that more people own their own home. After all, if you own your own home, you have a vital stake in the future of our country."" GWB

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